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A fundraiser to crow about

scary, isn't it?

October 07, 2007|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD

WILLIAMSPORT - A flurry of "major surgery" at Williamsport's Byron Memorial Park on Saturday produced "Buck Tooth Bob" and "Jazzy Jessie" at the 15th Harvest Hoe Down.

For the next few weeks or so, Ginger and Paul Wolford's front porch will be the straw-stuffed couple's home thanks to their five children's handiwork to create the chunky, felt-faced scarecrows.

The fundraiser, sponsored by the Williamsport Area Ministerium to benefit the local food bank, was an attractive option to the Falling Waters, W.Va., family, Ginger Wolford said.

Wolford's sister, Kelly Dolge of northeastern Pennsylvania and her two children, joined in the fun as part of a spontaneous weekend visit, and she was planning to take a couple of scarecrows home, too.

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"We doubled up," said Ginger Wolford as bits of straw and dust floated about amid a throng of children.

They were stuffing hay into brown hosiery that helped shape the scarecrow heads, jeans and long-sleeve shirts.

Scarecrow making has been a fixture for the fundraiser, which flourished in Saturday's warm, dry weather, said Mary Anna Kline, director of the food bank.

"The games and the scarecrows haven't stopped all day," Kline said.

Near the scarecrow production, a line of children waited to have their hair colored by Pam Swope of Calvary Temple Church in Williamsport.

"I've just been coming up with designs all day long," Swope said as she sprayed lines of green and blue temporary hair color on a young girl's curly hair near the scarecrows.

In addition to numerous children's activities, more than 20 vendors took part in this year's fundraiser, Kline said.

"It's turned out to be a great event," she said.

Organizers exceeded their goal of collecting 5,000 pounds of donated food before the end of the day, with about 5,700 pounds donated as of 3:30 p.m. Kline said they hoped to raise about $13,000.

The food donations were weighed on a grain scale and loaded in a truck donated by William Gower & Son Inc. of Williamsport.

Of the amount donated, 1,545 pounds was donated by Williamsport United Methodist Church. About 3,000 pounds of food collected by Williamsport Elementary School was delivered on Friday, Kline said.

"The utilities have went up so high, it's really been tough for people," Kline said. "Most of our clients that come in now are working people."

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